News

SJB seeks info on withdrawal of indictments in Karannagoda case

  • Files RTI with AG’s Dept. 

BY Pamodi Waravita

The main Parliamentary Opposition, the Samagi Jana Balawegeya (SJB), yesterday (2) filed a Right to Information (RTI) application with the Attorney General’s (AG) Department, requesting for information on the indictments that were withdrawn by the AG’s Department since 19 November 2019.

“Since 19 November 2019, there have been a large number of reports of indictments being withdrawn by the AG’s Department. We need to know why these indictments were withdrawn. It is interesting to note that the withdrawn indictments are those that are in relation to individuals connected to the current Government,” said SJB Parliamentarian Mujibur Rahuman while speaking to The Morning yesterday.

He also noted that the present AG, President’s Counsel Sanjay Rajaratnam is withdrawing the indictments that were mostly filed by the former AG Jayantha Jayasuriya PC, who is now the Chief Justice.

Rahuman questioned: “How does this work? Do charges change when the AG changes?”

Similarly, earlier this month, the Lawyers for the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP)-led National People’s Power (NPP) raised concerns about the independence of the ongoing legal procedures against high profile individuals, as they claimed that Members of the Government or close associates of its Leaders are being released from indictments by the AG’s Department on almost a weekly basis.

Last month saw the Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa being released from the indictments filed regarding the “Divi Neguma” case where Rajapaksa and former Divi Neguma Development Department Director General Kithsiri Ranawaka were accused of misappropriating Rs. 36.5 million of state funds to purchase and distribute galvanised iron pipes prior to the Presidential Election in 2015.